Massengill bids farewell in last meeting as mayor

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The last regular meeting of Mayor Bob Massengill’s term was oneof farewells and well-wishings as he exited office with the graceand class his supporters loved him for during the eight years heserved as alderman and mayor.

“I have enjoyed these last five years as your mayor, and I’vetried to serve all the people of Brookhaven and I’ve tried to befair and consistent,” he said. “I have tried to represent thiscommunity in a professional manner and be positive with the peoplewe come into contact with. I’ve tried to serve my Lord in thiscapacity, and I give Him credit for any success we’ve had.”

Massengill offered the board words of encouragement going intothe new administration under Mayor-elect Les Bumgarner.

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“I sincerely hope the next four years is a period of seeing thecity move forward. I thank you for willingness to serve and want towish you every possible success,” he said. “I sincerely mean thatand will be terribly disappointed if you don’t call and ask me atleast one question at some point during the next four years.”

Bumgarner and the other members of the board of aldermen, all ofwhom were re-elected, also expressed their gratitude to Massengillfor the time he dedicated to the city. Bumgarner said he is readyfor the challenge of taking over the city, but that Massengill is ahard act to follow.

“My goal is to make this city successful, and to improve thequality of life, and I’m ready to report for duty,” Bumgarner said.”I want to thank Bob for the job he’s done these last five years.It’s been splendid, and I think everyone appreciates that, but it’sgoing to be hard to fill your shoes.”

Ward Six Alderman David Phillips said that both as a fairly newalderman and as a Brookhaven resident, he appreciated Massengillfor his character and work ethic.

“I haven’t been (an alderman) but a year, but it’s been such apleasure to work with you,” he told Massengill. “The integrityyou’ve brought to the office and the tireless work you’ve done forthe city, even as a citizen I appreciate your work.”

Ward Two Alderman Terry Bates told Massengill he wished him luckin whatever he planned to do once he was free of the governmentcomplex.

“I sure have enjoyed working with you, and whatever you go intoin your retirement, or not in retirement but just leaving us, Ihope you’re really blessed,” he said.

And City Attorney Joe Fernald jokingly roasted the mayorbriefly, but told him that of the two mayors he had worked with, heappreciated Massengill’s vision and dedication.

“I think you’ve brought a wide talent to this city,” he said.”And when we needed someone who could pull things together, youdid.”

Massengill said he couldn’t have made it without theencouragement and support of the city employees and departmentheads.

“But I really want to thank my wife Carol and my family fortheir understanding these last five years,” he said. “This has beenan experience and an honor I’ll never forget.”